Advanced Energy Perspectives

Why a Bandage Fix for Cost-Effectiveness Testing Isn’t Enough

Posted by Adam Scheer, Jake Millette, Olivia Patterson, and Julie Michals

Jan 15, 2020 11:30:00 AM

Rip Off Band-Aid

This is a guest post by Adam Scheer (Recurve), Jake Millette and Olivia Patterson (Opinion Dynamics), and Julie Michals (E4TheFuture)

Driven by advancing technologies and by policies that are evolving to both mitigate and adapt to climate change, the energy industry is changing at a breakneck pace. On the demand side, our fundamental challenge is moving beyond siloed programs into scaled demand flexibility to achieve states’ priorities such as grid resilience, resource adequacy, and decarbonization, amidst increasing electrification. Critically, scaling distributed energy resources (DERs) to meet a host of policy goals will require that we leverage limited ratepayer dollars to cultivate as much energy efficiency (EE) and other DER investment as possible. The question is: are cost-effectiveness (CE) testing practices developed decades ago adequate to guide our industry investments today? In our experience, legacy CE practices are inhibiting both innovative program designs and commonsense best practices for putting ratepayer dollars to optimal use.

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Topics: Guest Post, 21st Century Electricity System, utility, Regulation, Energy Efficiency

Big Businesses’ Appetite for Renewable Energy in Florida is Growing, and Solar is on the Menu

Posted by Gloria Li

Dec 17, 2019 4:15:00 PM

Florida Buyers solar-730

Florida is, in many ways, a state powered by sunshine. From the endless summer that attracts droves of tourists and drives the associated $67 billion tourism industry to the sun-loving crops that allow Florida to lead the Southeast in agriculture, Floridians have the ready availability of sunlight to thank for the state’s most prominent industries. Now, there is another way that the Sunshine State could capitalize on its solar resource – to feed its commercial and industrial powerhouses, producing jobs and investment along with energy that’s low-cost and clean. 

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Topics: 21st Century Electricity System, Regulation, Advanced Energy Buyers Group

Top 10 Utility Regulation Trends of 2019

Posted by Coley Girouard

Dec 9, 2019 11:30:00 AM

TOP10 2019-730

In August, we published a list of the top 10 utility regulation trends of 2019 — so far. With 2019 wrapping up, we check in again. Ten trends and actions stand out above the rest, from states implementing 100% clean energy targets, to distributed energy resource integration efforts, to beneficial electrification investments. Here is the full round-up of the top matters before PUCs in 2019.

Note: some links in this post reference PUC filings and other documents in AEE's software platform, PowerSuite. Click here and sign up for a free trial.

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Topics: 21st Century Electricity System

Top 10 Utility Regulation Trends of 2019 – So Far

Posted by Coley Girouard

Jul 18, 2019 4:15:10 PM

Top 10 Utility Regulation Trends of 2019 So Far-500

In January, we published a list of the top 10 utility regulation trends of 2018. With 2019 at around the halfway point, we check in on the top public utility commission (PUC) actions and trends so far this year. Ten prominent trends and actions stand out above the rest, from renewables increasingly dominating utility resource plans, to wildfires sparking utility safety and liability concerns in California, to transportation electrification investments becoming more widespread from coast to coast. Here is the full round-up of the top 10 matters before PUCs so far in 2019.

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Topics: 21st Century Electricity System, Regulation

Standby and Buyback Rates Can Hurt the Economics of Distributed Generation. New York Just Took Action to Fix That.

Posted by Ryan Katofsky and Danny Waggoner

Jun 26, 2019 3:59:07 PM

NY standby rates order-500

Rate designs for distributed energy resources (DERs) remains a hot topic. States are taking different approaches, but some are better than others. Some states are making adjustments (typically reductions) to flat kilowatt-hour rates, such as net metering and buy-back rates, or adding/raising fixed charges that often focus exclusively on utility revenue without looking at DER from a total value perspective. DER can impose costs on the system, but it can also provide value, both to the utility and more broadly to the public, and rates and compensation should take both into account. In its continuing effort to comprehensively assess the value of DER and design rates accordingly, New York recently made some landmark adjustments that should provide fairer treatment for customers that have significant distributed generation facilities, such as combined heat and power (CHP) systems. The improved rate is also available as an option for all customers, including residential customers without DG, and is likely to be a good choice for customers with electric vehicles and certain types of DER.

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Topics: 21st Century Electricity System, Regulation, Highlights

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